There are many causes for tooth loss including decay, gum disease, failed root canal therapy and dental trauma.
Missing teeth will have significant negative effect on patient’s quality of life and confidence including the ability to smile, chew food and other functions like speech.
Traditionally, missing teeth were replaced using removable cosmetic dentures or fixed dental bridge to fill the gaps.
However, dental implants are becoming the gold standards to replace missing teeth.
Dental Implant (Tooth Implant) is a small screw shaped post made of titanium surgically placed in the area of the missing tooth or teeth after preparing a channel in the jawbone.
Once placed, dental implants heal to integrate and fuse with the jawbone.
A custom-made cosmetic dental crown is placed on top of the post to provide the final tooth. The fitted cosmetic dental crown is made to provide the most natural fit, feel, and appearance possible
Unlike dental bridges, dental implants don’t rely on neighboring teeth for support. As a result no damage is inflected on those teeth. And, unlike cosmetic dentures, bone loss is usually avoided since dental implants actually replace the tooth and its root.
Dental implants could also be placed immediately after teeth extraction.
Dental implants can be utilize a technique called all on 4 dental implants to replace all missing teeth in one jaw. This can create same day smile replacing all missing teeth in one day. Restoring smile and function.
With dental implants eating, chewing difficulty can be something in the past. They look and feel like natural teeth.
Dr Daoudi, specialist prosthodontist, of London Smile Care recommend maintenance visits with the dental hygienist every three months to maintain the health of the dental implant. Annual check ups by the specialist implant dentist is also recommended
But what are the cons of dental implants?
Although dental implants are generally safe to place, but they require surgical procedure.
Like any surgery there are some risks of discomfort, bleeding bruising all of such issues are transient in nature and full recovery usually achieved in few days.
Rarely, nerve or sinus problems occur. Careful planning and examination is needed to eliminate such complications. Dr Daoudi has 20-year experience with dental implants with excellent successful track record.
In rare occasions dental implants may be rejected by the body. In case where significant amount of jawbone went missing due to previous infection, bone graft procedure, sinus lift or gum graft procedure maybe needed to facilitate dental implant placement. This would result in a delay in treatment time taking many months before having the definitive cosmetic tooth fitted.
Dental implants aren’t susceptible to decay, but infections can still happen. The gum around the implant can be infected by bacteria, triggering a condition called peri-implantitis, a periodontal disease that can result in bone loss.
Dental implants provide the best option to replace missing teeth but the initial investment can be more than a cosmetic denture. Some dental insurance don’t cover dental implants cost. However, the outcome usually over weight the financial cost of dental implant.